ST 2565

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2565

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment *****

Another very enjoyable Sunday puzzle – I liked the 200-year musical leap in time between the two long across clue/answer combos

Across
1 Supporters having no right to become such addicts (6)
FIENDS, as in “dope fiends” or maybe “crossword fiends” – R = right is removed from FRIENDS = Supporters
4 Got to the bottom of what’s feminine in diamonds (8)
FATHOMED – F = feminine, AT HOME = in, D = diamonds – one of the tricks used by setters is to chop up words in unexpected ways – here, 1/6/1 rather than the usual 2-4 letter chunks
10 Having a view, for example, about female principle (5)
EYING = “having a view” – e.g. = “for example”, with YIN = “female principle” inside it
11 Students collectively, in universities, join together on rare occasions (9)
UNUSUALLY = on rare occasions. Potential setter’s nightmare here – a word with 3 U’s in it. No problem for this setter – two of them become “universities”, with the NUS (students collectively) between them, then we have ALLY = join together
12 Illegally distributed to give profit to member (7)
BOOTLEG = illegally distributed – BOOT = profit (maybe seen most clearly from bootless), LEG = member
13 Expend my energy, crossing river in old boat (7)
TRIREME = old boat (the kind of thing with Spartacus at the oars) – R = river, in TIRE ME = “expend my energy”
14 Digs choir I led, arranged around piano – people like a little Mozart (5,9)
CHILD PRODIGIES – P = piano, in anag. of “digs choir I led”. Mozart was dragged round Europe by his father for 3 years when aged 7-10.
17 One depends on current supply as source of rock (8,6)
ELECTRIC GUITAR – cryptic definition with “current supply” and “source of rock” as the two phrases that need to be understood the right way.
21 Annual publication from local man, a calendar (7)
ALMANAC – hidden in “local man, a calendar” – with the close resemblance of almanacs and calendars as a possible source of mild confusion – the true def. is “Annual publication”
23 With start of therapy, getting real about feelings (7)
TACTUAL = about feelings (physical touchings rather than emotions) – T = “start of therapy”, ACTUAL = real
24 Resort for Romanians in enclave inside Italy (3,6)
SAN MARINO = the enclave – anag. of “Romanians”, indicated by “resort” = “a different ordering”
25 Final stage appearance as Shakespearean villain grabbing maiden (5)
IMAGO = “final stage (of insect life cycle) appearance” – M = maiden, in IAGO = Shakespearean villain
26 Character fault one’s shown in mile race (8)
MISPRINT = “character fault” – I = one, in (M = mile, SPRINT = race)
27 Queen accepting European vote as constructive addition (6)
ANNEXE = constructive addition – (E = European, X = vote) in ANNE = queen
Down
1 Informative response not going beyond characters in first eleven (8)
FEEDBACK = informative response, of which all the letters are in the first eleven letters of the alphabet (A-K) – some people will grumble about there probably being dozens of similar 8-letter words, but I don’t mind this kind of clue provided that precision elsewhere means that you’ll find the right answer
2 I led a riot badly, as leader (9)
EDITORIAL = leader – anag. of “I led a riot”
3 Tracks guided traveller in frozen North (7)
DOGSLED = traveller in frozen North – nice timing! Slightly odd to think of the vehicle as the traveller rather than the passengers, but perfectly logical. DOGS (vb.) = follows = tracks, LED = guided
5 What can be included repeatedly at OU? (5,9)
ADULT EDUCATION – anagram of (included, at, at, OU)* and our first all-in-one / &lit
6 Old in hospital taking advantage of accommodation (7)
HOUSING = accomodation – O = old, in (H = hospital, USING = taking advantage of)
7 The writer, a kung fu expert, got in scrappy fight (5)
MELEE = scrappy fight – ME = “the writer”, (Bruce) LEE = “kung fu expert” – which makes a change from the usual US Civil War general
8 Remove damp from study for old poet (6)
DRYDEN = (old) poet – DRY DEN = “remove damp from study” – an easy clue for old hands, as there doesn’t seem to be much else the setter can do with DRYDEN
9 Tasteless dissension around king in some quarters, perhaps (6,8)
VULGAR FRACTION = “some quarters, perhaps” – a vulgar fraction being “A over B” rather than “something point something” – VULGAR = tasteless, R = king, in FACTION = dissension (as well as a group of

dissenters)

15 Support, putting in time for Conservative followers (9)
ENTOURAGE = followers – (T = Time) replaces (C = Conservative), in ENCOURAGE = support
16 Revolutionary movement embraced by foremost English novelist (8)
TROLLOPE = novelist – ROLL + revolutionary movement, in (TOP = foremost, E = English) – the kind of clue where you might well get the answer from the strict definition plus a bit of the wordplay – “English novelist” in this case
18 Group of Roman soldiers almost capturing a horseman, so to speak? (7)
CENTAUR = “horseman, so to speak” – a centaur being half man, half horse – A = a, in CENTUR(y) = “group of Roman soldiers almost”
19 Do without top ointment (7)
UNCTION = ointment (as well as (possibly extreme) unction in which you’re anointed with said ointment) – “function” = “do”, without its top letter, this being a down clue
20 It can be got from tree, primarily medicinal (6)
BALSAM – BALSA = tree, M = “primarily medicinal”, for our second all-in-one / &lit – balsam does indeed come from trees
22 Missing British spy chief at Pentagon, say (5)
MINUS = missing – “silly boy went out in the freezing cold minus his gloves” – “M in U.S.” = “British spy chief at Pentagon, say”